My roommate, and best friend, is borderline obsessed with horses. Just the other day when were having a conversation about my vegan blog, and different animal products in our medicine, she somehow was able to relate it right back to horses. She informed me that a drug called Premarin, that is used as a female hormone replacer for menopausal women, is actually pregnant mare's urine! Premarin (also including Prempro, Premphase, Prempac, and Premelle) is a drug that is made up of conjugated estrogen from the urine of pregnant mares that is prescribed to menopausal women to reduce symptoms, as well as prescribed by doctors to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Yuck! Not only is that just nasty but it is bad for you, and the horses that they get the urine from.
If you are taking Premarin stop, and ask for synthetic or non PMU organic estrogen-replacement drugs instead! There has been a decline in the production of this hormone due to the fact that it has been known to cause cancer in women. Over 300 PMU ranches have closed since this was discovered, but there is over 70 in operation, and Premarin is still on the market. Even on Premarin's manufacturer's site it states that these "Estrogens increase the chance of getting cancer of the uterus". When researching this further I found on http://premarin.org/ that Premarin was once the most prescribed drug in america between (1975 to 1999) and in 2002 it was still the fourth most commonly prescribed drug. Besides the fact that it is bad for your health, the production of Premarin is harmful to the animals producing it as well.
Mares are kept pregnant in order to collect this precious urine. Those of the mares that do not become impregnated with in a short period of time are sent back to auction or simply sent off to a slaughter house, and sold for meat in Europe. These mares are often kept tied up indoors for at least six months out of the year, without any exercise or fresh air. Also the foals these horses have are considered a by product of this business and need to be adopted or other wise are sent to a slaughter house as well.
My roommate also supplied me with the sad story of one of the horses named Trinity that the owner of the ranch she worked at had. Trinity was a Premarin rescued foal that was donated to the director, Nora Klein Fischbach, of Strides Therapeutic Riding Center. When they first got Trinity she was taken to the vet who believed she was malnourished. They then started to train trinity at the age of three until she was five years old and flipped over backwards after being shod. A few months later Trinity went down in her stall and couldn't get back up. The vet once again said it was from the malnutrition she underwent from her original breeder, and they had to make the agonizing decision to put her to sleep.
So it you are currently taking Premarin stop! It is bad for your health as well as the health of these beautiful creatures. For more detailed information check out http://premarin.org/.